Two away games in the third division have brought only two draws, yet home fixtures have been won comfortably. The contrast is something the Ibrox manager has to address, but it is still a welcome development for tomorrow's meeting with Elgin City to be a home tie.
Rangers tend to be unflustered at Ibrox. Falkirk were defeated without any drama last Thursday night, and although Elgin City are the third division leaders, the game will not faze Rangers. "Ibrox is comforting in the respect that it is a great place to play, it is a fantastic stadium and the surface is absolutely tremendous, but at the same time that comfort gets thrown out the window because you have to go and do the business," said McCoist.
Rangers have a free weekend because of Scotland's World Cup qualifier against Serbia next Saturday. The time will be used improving the fitness of recent arrivals, but also attempting to smooth out the kinks in what is, essentially, a newly built team. "Nobody said this was going to click instantly and things would fall into place," said the manager. "That generally doesn't happen, you have to work hard for it. That is what we will have to do. The spare week will give us the opportunity to work on a couple of different shapes and set plays."
It is doubtful whether Ross Jack, the Elgin City manager, will find Ibrox "comforting" tomorrow. "The whole thing still feels totally surreal to me, even to be on the same park as Rangers at Ibrox," said Jack. "It will be an absolutely gigantic task for us. We have massive respect for the club, the crowd and Ally McCoist with all he has done to take them through this hard time. It's an honour for us to be on the same park as them but I just hope Rangers end up being pleasantly – or unpleasantly – surprised by our standard of player. What a platform it is for our lads. There's been one heck of a hype in the build-up but now it is all about the football."
Jack believes Rangers will be crowned champions come May, despite their stuttering away form. "I'm a realist and while it would be great to think we could top the table, I doubt it will happen. For the other nine teams in the league, it looks like a case of vying for second place. We just want to cling on to Rangers' coat-tails for as long as possible."